Donald Trump says he fired James Comey because he was 'unpopular'

19 Mai, 2017, 23:05 | Author: Claudine Rigal

The man tasked with investigating possible meddling by Russian Federation in the 2016 presidential election - a probe that will likely encompass President Trump's recent firing of FBI Director James Comey - once called Comey "one of the finest people I've ever met".

While Donald Trump's press conference with Colombian President Juan Manuel wasn't his first time facing journalists since the appointment of Robert Mueller as special prosecutor, it was the day's most memorable.

On Wednesday, a high-powered special counsel was appointed to investigate events around the 2016 election - a move that left the Republican billionaire seething, and sent world stock markets tumbling.

Trump, during the presser, also again hung his justification for firing Comey on a memo from Rosenstein that made a case for the dismissal of the former Federal Bureau of Investigation director.

"I respect the move, but the entire thing has been a witch hunt", Trump said.

"We're going to have a director who's going to be outstanding, I'll be announcing that director very soon".

Democrats had slammed Comey's "poor" handling of the Clinton email investigation as recently as this month, but then later decried his firing as an attempt to stymie the FBI's investigation into Russian interference in the elections and any collusion with Trump's campaign.

It later emerged that Comey had made notes of his meetings with Trump, who reportedly asked him to quash an investigation into Flynn's contacts with foreign governments.

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Trump said his administration was committed to cutting the flow of drugs into the United States.

Earlier this week there were several news reports that Trump made the request regarding Flynn during a February meeting in the Oval Office - these accounts were based on a memo Comey drafted at the time, the contents of which were described by officials familiar with the memo.

"Everybody, even my enemies, have said there is no collusion", he said. But in later tweets, the president said he did share information about threats with the Russian officials, though he neither confirmed nor denied if it was classified. But before the reporter had the chance to finish his question, Trump interrupted him with an assertive "no" and said "next question".

The denials amount to Trump's most extensive, public response yet to the wave of negative reports aimed at the White House and members of the Trump administration.

Fighting back has consumed much of the political oxygen inside the White House, leaving Trump's agenda in doubt.

"That was a poor, poor performance", Trump said. "You can't let them get you down, can't let the critics and the naysayers get in the way of your dreams".

"It shows we're a divided, mixed-up, not-unified country", Trump told the group. And I think it's a very, very negative thing.

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